The study of the normal function of living organisms and the means by which it is achieved.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

4
votes
1answer
482 views

Why do I breathe out of BOTH nostrils?

After reading the question why do I only breathe out of one nostril I realized that breathing out of both isn't common. I have always breathed out of both, and when I get a stuffy nose, or a runny ...
5
votes
1answer
55 views

Components of the concept of Developmental Noise?

Developmental noise is a concept that correspond to the amount of possible phenotypic variance of a given genotype in a given environment. Intrinsic noise (aka Cellular noise) is a component of ...
2
votes
2answers
819 views

Why does a blood test show ethanol when no alcohol was consumed?

Why would ethanol show up in a blood test if a person had not been drinking alcohol in many years. What are other reasons for showing ethanol?
0
votes
1answer
36 views

Characteristics of radius of blood vessel

Which properties do determine the radius of blood vessel? I have these thoughts distension, elasticity, contractility and cross-sectional area of the walls. Is there any other properties?
3
votes
1answer
873 views

How is Hypertonic Urine Produced in a Mammalian Kidney?

I know that the ascending loop of Henle is impermeable to water and ions, and, by end of the ascending limb, the osmolarity of the tubular fluid is very low due to the active transport of ions out ...
2
votes
1answer
67 views

What's the mechanism behind 'losing heat through your extremities'?

I can understand how if you are not circulating enough (warm) blood, by not moving much while in a cold environment, your extremities themselves lose heat, and become cold - but I don't understand how ...
4
votes
1answer
105 views

Are there any situations in which phenylephrine is preferred to pseudoephedrine?

In the mid 2000s in the US, due to issues of drug enforcement, pseudoephedrine containing medications were brought behind the pharmacy counter and in most cases require ID, and phenylephrine was ...
0
votes
2answers
827 views

Negative role of Placenta

How can a placenta turn hostile to the mother or fetus ? What are the abnormalities found during placental delivery ?
1
vote
0answers
17 views

What biological processes are affected by dietary fiber besides peristalsis?

Dietary fiber affects the rate of peristalsis, but what other effects does it have? Does fiber affect signal transduction, hydration, the autonomic nervous system, organ function, other biological ...
3
votes
2answers
6k views

How does extracellular potassium ion concentration and calcium ion concentration affect the excitability of a cell?

When extracellular $K^+$ concentration increase by a certain amount, excitability of cells is higher because the resting potential shifts toward a higher equilibrium potential of $K^+$, therefore ...
3
votes
2answers
145 views

What are the factors that control the speed of propagation of neuronal signals?

If we consider an analogy between a wire and a neuron there may be some resemblance between the factors controlling the data flow rate. For example the increased width of wire leads to decreased ...
2
votes
1answer
517 views

Why does caffeine consumption cause one to urinate more?

What is the physiological mechanism behind the diuretic effect of caffeine?
2
votes
1answer
111 views

Why does the arch of aorta coils?

My study materials use the word vesselcompression chamber of aorta to emphasize aorta's elastic property. The arch of the aorta only coils, not its straight part. I think the reason why the arch ...
0
votes
1answer
52 views

Why is Aorta sometimes called Compression chamber?

I find this statement that Aorta is called Compression Chamber in my study materials. Aorta can it keeps blood flowing it can accumulate potential energy for bumping and compression However, why ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Why there is a very high drop in pressure from arteries to arterioles?

Laplace law explains why the pressure is the same in aorta and arteries (100). I am thinking why there is so big drop in pressure when going from arteries to arterioles (40-60). Why there is a great ...
4
votes
3answers
334 views

How does strength of a pulse related to EKG(ECG)?

There are variabilities in the heart rate as well as strength of heartbeats. I want to know if one can predict which heartbeat will be strong or weak based on the corresponding EKG/ECG signal. I am ...
8
votes
5answers
434 views

Why is the human body able to repair a broken bone and not a heart muscle?

The human body can repair skin/organ laceration, fractures, even repair nerves - albeit the duration and rate of recovery differ. For instance: The burn scar on my arm from the hot soldering iron ...
1
vote
1answer
64 views

Gastro-intestinal physiology reference

I am a physicist but I have always wanted to understand how my digestion takes place in as much detail as possible. I have no idea about books or reference on the subject of Gastro-intestinal and ...
2
votes
3answers
3k views

What organs are absolutely needed by the human body?

The title is my question: what organs are absolutely needed (fatal if injured/removed) by the human body and perhaps animals in general? I'm not asking which organs are mechanically replaceable, but ...
3
votes
0answers
65 views

Relationship between mN and mg in vessel contraction studies?

What is the relationship between mN and mg as the units involved to measure the changes in contraction? A tool most widely used is an instrument called myograph. In these exoeriments, either units of ...
1
vote
1answer
35 views

What are the movement mechanisms of thrombus?

I am thinking how thrombus (veins, arteries and heart) can move. Secondary mechanisms come to my mind only: some enzyme which lyses it, probably adhesion mechanism. Blood circulation (flow rate) ...
14
votes
3answers
1k views

Do men have more extreme variations than women?

This question was considered unsuitable for Skeptics and I think it is more suited to BIology than Cognitive Sciences I was reading this article which I found interesting. It is not supported with ...
2
votes
1answer
117 views

Inductance in cell

In an animal cell, especially neuron and in particular its axon, while there is electrical resistance and capacitance mechanism in the cell, which play essential roles in the cable theory model of ...
7
votes
3answers
406 views

Where does extra blood come from to fill your muscles during exercise?

Let's say I go to the gym and lift some weights an hour. During this time my arms will grow due to the "pump" -- the extra blood rushing in to feed the muscles. For example, I've measured about 2-3 ...
3
votes
2answers
99 views

Is vision a vestigial sense for deep ocean species?

Sunlight doesn't penetrate beyond a couple of hundred feet from the surface of the ocean. Species that exist at greater depth probably live in a state of perpetual night; yet from a quick google image ...
5
votes
1answer
117 views

Competition for mates in sea horses

This source here ...research has shown that it is STILL the males that compete for females. says that male sea horses compete for mates but this source here Females exhibit a ...
2
votes
1answer
60 views

What makes certain obligate anaerobes viable in fermentation starter cultures?

If Propionibacterium are obligate anaerobes (to wit, poisoned by oxygen), what makes 'Dairy' or classical propionibacteria (e.g. P. shermanii, P. jensenii, P. acidicpropionici, et al) viable in ...
0
votes
1answer
91 views

What organism most efficiently converts a given quantity of mass into heat?

Question I am trying to answer: In the popular film The Matrix, heat given off by humans is harvested as an energy source. I wondered, if this were possible, would humans be a good organism to ...
7
votes
1answer
80 views

Excretion of monovalent and divalent ions in sharks

I have heard that sharks excrete $\ce{Na+}$ and $\ce{Cl-}$ by their gill surfaces but divalent ions like magnesium are excreted through feces. What could be the reason behind this?
2
votes
0answers
50 views

What does salt do to styes?

Styes formed in the eyes are cured by dabbing at them with lukewarm water(I saw this being done many a times as a home remedy.) At times, common salt is added to the water before dabbing. My mother ...
5
votes
1answer
97 views

How does a Na+/H+ antiporter drive osmosis in this “osmotic motor”?

This recent paper in Cell describes a cancer cell using osmotic pressure to move in confined spaces. The cell preferentially inserts Na+/H+ antiporters in the leading membrane. I want someone to ...
4
votes
1answer
93 views

The mechanism of mechanoreception?

I am interested in knowing the molecular mechanism behind mechanoreception/mechanotransduction (i.e. mechanism behind receptor potential generation on mechanical stimulation). I know that most ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

Can humans transdermally absorb minerals from ocean water, and if so how much?

According to several studies quoted here, chemicals can be absorbed by the skin transdermally, at least under certain conditions. When it comes to elements in seawater like sodium, magnesium, ...
2
votes
1answer
82 views

What happens during a Raynauds episode?

Raynaud's phenomenon can be a serious health issue, as the blood flow to the extremities, mainly the fingers is compromised, causing fingers to blanche, and then turn blue. Severe Raynaud's can cause ...
2
votes
1answer
147 views

Why does crying lead to a running nose and reddened nose tip?

Why do we have a running nose for quite some time after crying? It persists even after we stop crying. Why is it so? I have faced this always. Also, why does our nose redden on crying for long?
5
votes
1answer
137 views

By what mechanism can hypoglycemia induce fainting?

Hypoglycemia (Low blood sugar) is said to be among the potential causes of human-faintings. I was wondering by which mechanism this happens. Google search results are abundant; there are lists of ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Does the human ear adapt to noise levels?

I have noticed lately that if I go to sleep, when I have my radio running, it is on lowest volume, I still consider it kind of loud. In the morning, when being on the edge of waking up, I hear the ...
2
votes
0answers
1k views

Why does skin sometimes suddenly itch when you stretch it? [closed]

Sometimes, when I bend over, areas of my skin like my back can suddenly itch quite intensely. Sometimes it may be another part of my body and the pattern seems to be a part of the skin organ that is ...
1
vote
1answer
93 views

How Ants know about Earthquake?

How does an ant know about Earthquake is it because of an organ or due to other factors?
2
votes
1answer
83 views

Do Ants have a sense of Direction?

Do ants understand which way is up or down? Could they differentiate between uphill and downhill?
6
votes
1answer
126 views

Disproportion in cranial nerve innervation?

The cranial nerve innervation is highly disproportionate, as far as humans are concerned. I am not sure of the advantage of being innervated by cranial nerve versus being innervated by a normal ...
0
votes
1answer
51 views

Can lymph be in peripheral blood?

I read an argument that 1-3% of lymph is in peripheral blood. However, I am not sure if this lymph is about lymphocytes in peripheral blood; not lymph itself. Lymph gets exchanged between capillaries ...
1
vote
2answers
260 views

Hypovolemia and orthostatic hypertension

What is the physiological mechanism behind the occurrence of orthostatic hypertension in the presence of hypovolemia?
5
votes
1answer
105 views

Enlargement of thyroid gland

Why does thyroid gland enlarge both in hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism? Hypothyroid goitre is due to lack of iodine in diet and hyperthyroid goitre (Exopthalmic goitre, Grave's disease) is due to ...
1
vote
1answer
61 views

Can tubular secretion regarded as local hormone?

Tubular secretion is : The process in which ions and other waste products are transported into the distal tubules of the nephron. can it be regarded as local hormone??
0
votes
1answer
226 views

Mechanism of antiperistalsis

What is the mechanism of antiperistalsis that occurs during vomiting? Why the peristaltic waves normally don't propagate in anal to oral direction? Please give logical explanation with authentic ...
2
votes
1answer
83 views

Do insomniacs yawn?

According to wikipedia, the jury is still out on the function a yawn serves. The article referenced above however writes to say Yawning most often occurs in adults immediately before and after ...
6
votes
1answer
204 views

How is hibernation/aestivation different from anesthesia?

How do hibernation/aestivation happen? I read on wikipedia that a squirrel injected with the body fluids of a hibernating fellow is more prone to hibernation. If hibernation/aestivation are driven ...
1
vote
1answer
109 views

Simultaneously using both hands - How does that work?

Is some part in one hemisphere the decision maker and "calling the shots" - controlling the opposite side's hand "directly" and controlling its own side's hand through the corpus callosum. Or: is ...
4
votes
1answer
87 views

What is the reason behind more severe proteinuria in nephrotic syndrome than in nephritic syndrome?

Why is there less protein loss via urine in case of nephritic syndrome than in case of nephrotic syndrome?